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Outlook favorable

Obamacare turned 5 years old this week and the overall negative popular opinion on the legislation is starting to be replaced by positive experiences. GOP Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA) found this out to her chagrin when she posted an image on her official Facebook page, slamming the Affordable Care Act and asking constituents to share their Obamacare nightmare stories. The response probably wasn't what she expected.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Mar 27, 2015 - 109 comments

The Algorithmic Self: On Being Made by the Numbers

"The first step toward protecting the self in an age of algorithmic manipulation is to recognize such manipulation as a problem." Frank Pasquale, writing for The Hedgehog Review, grapples with "The Algorithmic Self." [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes on Mar 16, 2015 - 5 comments

Media consumption habits of liberals and conservatives in US

When it comes to getting news about politics and government, liberals and conservatives inhabit different worlds. The project – part of a year-long effort to shed light on political polarization in America – looks at the ways people get information about government and politics in three different settings: the news media, social media and the way people talk about politics with friends and family. In all three areas, the study finds that those with the most consistent ideological views on the left and right have information streams that are distinct from those of individuals with more mixed political views – and very distinct from each other. [more inside]
posted by TheLittlePrince on Mar 10, 2015 - 59 comments

Black Friday

Today, March 6, is Blackout Day, "a day where black people post, share, reblog, like, and distribute other photos of black people on social media. This includes Tumblr, Instagram, the petri dish known as Facebook, Vine, Twitter, and any other site that allows you to share photos." (FAQ, official master post)
posted by Jacqueline on Mar 6, 2015 - 20 comments

Why I've posted 27,000 times to one online forum

Facebook and Twitter are indifferent to your conversation, as long as you’re having it on their platform. A veteran of the Rotten Tomatoes forums laments the decline of online forums in the age of social media.
posted by emelenjr on Mar 5, 2015 - 65 comments

@Pats28Hawks24

The Last Man game is an annual competition to be the last person in the United States to know who won the Super Bowl.
Most of the runners [...] found themselves waking up each day in a cold sweat. “I feel like I’m being sequestered for the stupidest jury trial in modern history,” one competitor said. “It’s gotten to the point where three things may end me: recklessness, homesickness, or sheer boredom.” Several players eventually said that they couldn’t take it anymore and quit. “I’ve spent way more time avoiding the Knowledge than I’ve ever spent thinking on it in the past,” one said, committing seppuku with Twitter as his sword.

posted by frimble on Feb 16, 2015 - 86 comments

How Facebook Landed Me In Rikers

How the NYPD is using social media to put Harlem teens behind bars.
posted by ellieBOA on Feb 13, 2015 - 24 comments

insufficient context, scale, frequency or scope

"Instead, most current systems, almost without fail, do the opposite. Moderators responsible for content and complaints, regardless of gender, are making decisions based not just on the information they are reviewing, but on the way in which the information flows – linear, acontextual and isolated from other incidents. They are reliant, despite their best efforts, on technical systems that provide insufficient context, scale, frequency or scope. In addition, they lack specific training in trauma (their own or users) and in understanding gender-based violence. " -- "Silicon Valley sexism: why it matters that the internet is made by men, for men", by Soraya Chemaly, The New Statesman
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Feb 9, 2015 - 25 comments

Call now for a free start-up kit!

Television commercial for The Facebook from the mid-90s. (SLYT)
posted by DirtyOldTown on Jan 21, 2015 - 45 comments

You aint tht good luv

"For many men, beauty, coolness, [and] desirability are gifts they alone can bestow upon women. They get baffled, even aggressive when you show you've known you possess those things all along." (BuzzFeed, trigger warning for hate speech) [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jan 12, 2015 - 119 comments

Links to outside pages are a problem to be solved

From Facebook's blog: What the shift to video [posts on Facebook] means to creators. From The Awl: What the shift to video [posts on Facebook] means to Facebook.
posted by Going To Maine on Jan 9, 2015 - 71 comments

Algorithms are essentially thoughtless.

Inadvertent Algorithmic Cruelty: Author and Web design consultant Eric Meyer lost his daughter Rebecca to a brain tumor earlier this year, as mentioned previously on the Blue--or in this case the Purple. At the year's end, Facebook's Year in Review app has been sending him ghastly reminders of this recent history with an auto-populated, cheerily decorated slideshow featuring pictures of his dead daughter. Mediating on the influence of such algorithms in our lives, he writes: To call a person “thoughtless” is usually considered a slight, or an outright insult; and yet, we unleash so many literally thoughtless processes on our users, on our lives, on ourselves.
posted by Cash4Lead on Dec 25, 2014 - 83 comments

Black people don't have that luxury to be able to tap out...

"Too often, when I'm using my fiber-optic space to share, vent, rant, and process the realities of being Black in America, I'm faced with White people responding with comments and private messages that I'm attacking, disappointing, angering, or hurting them. Or, they use patronizing language like, 'Stacey, you're much smarter than this,' or 'I thought you were a more reasonable person.'

"How do I let them know that when I say things like 'White supremacy needs to be destroyed,' that I'm not talking about personally destroying them? How do I not become frustrated at those who jump in to debate and discredit what Black people are experiencing, in our own threads?" White Women, Please Don't Expect Me to Wipe Away Your Tears, by Stacey Patton at Dame Magazine. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Dec 17, 2014 - 74 comments

Face the face

"Facebook actually makes masks out of everyone’s faces." Artist Sterling Crispin creates DATA-MASKS as a way to physically present the abstract data structures that Facebook and biometric surveillance systems use to pull a face from a crowd.
posted by a lungful of dragon on Dec 2, 2014 - 10 comments

Finally Single!!!

What's On Your Mind? No one is as happy as they present themselves on Facebook (because everyone lies). Counterpoint: That's okay.
posted by quin on Dec 1, 2014 - 33 comments

Social media as a crime scene

On Monday, the Supreme Court (with a recovering Ruth Bader Ginsburg) will hear argument in Elonis v. United States, a case where a man was convicted for posts and messages on Facebook that prosecutors treated as threats of actual violence. (trigger warning: descriptions of violence) [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Nov 29, 2014 - 52 comments

Now is the time to engage.

Dear White Allies: Stop Unfriending Other White People Over Ferguson. "...Please try and remember how USEFUL you could be should you decide to be brave enough to speak up to the folks more likely to hear YOU than me." [more inside]
posted by pseudostrabismus on Nov 27, 2014 - 54 comments

This Kid Just Died [VIDEO]

"Grief porn enters the Facebook era" "And, like regular pornography, the internet has transformed it. Freed from the already relaxed constraints of tabloid journalism, grief porn is no longer obligated to fake newsworthiness or importance. You don't need to die in a particularly tragic way; your death doesn't need to be the occasion for punishment or law-enactment. You just need to have produced consumable, shareable content before your untimely death. Rather than a news angle allowing a writer to smuggle grief porn into a paper, a grief-porn angle allows a content creator to smuggle a shareable unit onto Facebook." An interesting essay by Kelly Conaboy, ironically on Gawker.
posted by HuronBob on Nov 23, 2014 - 65 comments

the default parent

"Are you the default parent? If you have to think about it, you're not. You'd know. Trust me."
posted by flex on Nov 4, 2014 - 200 comments

An internet of firsts, some of them still online

The Webpage FX blog compiled a list of 13 internet "firsts," from the first email sent (1971) and the first spam, sent out to 400 people (1978), to the first photo posted online (1992) and much later, the first Instagram photo, (2010).
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 28, 2014 - 20 comments

Twitter Will Destroy The Nation-State, Argues Marketer

In an essay for the Wharton School of Business' blog, confessed 'social media evangelist' and marketer Curtis Houghland argues that the advent of twitter and other social media heralds the destruction of the nation state over the coming century. Literally.
Formal nationhood as the basis for a social contract with its citizens dates only to the 17th century. It is a relatively new phenomenon. As Pankaj Mishra points out in Bloomberg View, 'Few people in 1900 expected centuries-old empires — Qing, Hapsburg, Ottoman — to collapse by 1918.' The belief in the centralized nation as the default political organization is grossly misplaced. And we are seeing the de-evolution of nationhood before our eyes in our daily newsfeeds....As there are now more than 30 brands of Mountain Dew, there will be more nations in Europe.

posted by Diablevert on Oct 8, 2014 - 59 comments

MacWHAAAAAAT?????

"What a bizarre day. I'm sitting here watching my email fill up with message after message from people from so many different times and places of my life, all congratulating me for the astonishing good fortune of receiving a MacArthur Fellowship. Not to mention a flurry of texts and tweets, and I haven't had the energy to even look at Facebook." Cartoonist and Graphic Memoirist Alison Bechdel (previously on MetaFilter: 1, 2, 3, 4) has won the prestigious MacArthur Genuis grant, giving her the opportunity to dig into her archives for a previous comic she drew in 2004 to conclude her reaction blog post. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Sep 24, 2014 - 32 comments

Orwell + Seth Goodin + Ashton Kutcher=Satan/Zuckerberg?

One budding marketer discovered an innovative use for targeted Facebook ads: Tormenting his roomate
posted by Diablevert on Sep 19, 2014 - 53 comments

I don't know what I am doing with Face Book!! Love, Grandmaster Flash

Love, Grampa and GrandmaSTER FLASH: Grandmothers accidentally tagging Grandmaster Flash on Facebook.
posted by not_on_display on Sep 11, 2014 - 45 comments

The Sexist Facebook Movement The Marine Corps Can’t Stop

That these men, these U.S. Marines, openly engage in this behavior, openly harass and denigrate women and minorities — under their real names, their real pictures, with no fear of repercussions — reflects a perceived tolerance of their actions. Senior leaders have never told them not to do it, never said that it’s unacceptable, and they’ve never seen anyone get in trouble for it. Although women have been in the US Marines for nearly one hundred years now, a large "traditionalist" Marine culture still resents them and others in private and now increasingly in public through social media. [more inside]
posted by Lord Chancellor on Aug 20, 2014 - 42 comments

human connection with & despite algorithmic curation

I quit liking things on Facebook for two weeks. Here's how it changed my view of humanity [more inside]
posted by flex on Aug 18, 2014 - 73 comments

Facebook tests satire tag.

Oh, this will surely go over real well.
posted by Curious Artificer on Aug 17, 2014 - 49 comments

memes that demean

"Having influential figures like George Takei publishing a meme that reinforces disabled=fake is incredibly damaging to disabled people." [more inside]
posted by flex on Aug 13, 2014 - 137 comments

Like Ouroboros

Like Hell.
posted by alms on Aug 11, 2014 - 36 comments

The *first* revelation this week, at least

This week's Glenn Greenwald revelation is that Britain's GCHQ JTRIG intelligence organization offers its agents and planners tools with abilities to increase the search ranking of chosen web sites, “change outcome of online polls”, “masquerade Facebook Wall Posts for individuals or entire countries”, and accomplish “amplification of a given message, normally video, on popular multimedia websites (Youtube).” [more inside]
posted by XMLicious on Jul 16, 2014 - 54 comments

Glamour Shots 2.0

The NYT Style section reports that "image-conscious digital natives" are paying for expensive and elaborate portrait sessions to get one-of-a-kind shots to use in social media profiles and on professional websites. These photos (which the Times incorrectly calls "glamour selfies") are not your professional headshots; instead the subjects are depicted in a warehouse, in a field, in a pickup truck, etc. The motivations? Enhancing a personal brand, celebrating a milestone birthday... and, of course, getting lots of "likes" on Facebook. Slate's XX Factor blog defends the trend (if you can call it a trend) by suggesting that the portrait subjects are trying to avoid age discrimination.
posted by trillian on Jul 11, 2014 - 101 comments

Cheatbook

New research finds a correlation between social network use and divorce rates. "We don't know whether Facebook is causing divorce or divorce is causing the use of Facebook," said a study author. A Facebook spokesman says it's "ludicrous" to suggest a link between the social network site and divorce. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach on Jul 8, 2014 - 104 comments

She's Still Dying on Facebook

It’s been five years since my best friend from high school died, but her death happens over and over online.
posted by motorcycles are jets on Jul 7, 2014 - 41 comments

look, Mum - no hands!

"YouTube user Now 夠了沒 has broadcast a genius method of putting on pants.
It is one that forgoes the often irritating and time-consuming use of hands.
No doubt this is why the internet was invented."
(Buzzfeed link - includes animated .gifs & embedded video; soundtrack: "The Final Countdown") [more inside]
posted by flex on Jul 6, 2014 - 23 comments

Living in a Fool’s Paradise

San Francisco must change. "...the current state of permitting regulations for building and the glacial pace of infrastructure projects in San Francisco benefit very few people and risk turning it into a caricature of its former self for tourists and residents rich enough to live in a fantasy, not a living city. If there was ever a time when San Francisco needed to embrace a dynamic, expansive policy for building housing, offices and transportation, it is now." (Previously: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.)
posted by ambrosia on Jul 6, 2014 - 72 comments

We all really are just rats in the Facebook maze

Facebook scientists, having apparently become bored with optimizing advertising algorithms, are now running social science experiments on the users. Link to the actual paper. I assume they are already selling this to the advertisers as a way to alter "brand perceptions."
posted by COD on Jun 28, 2014 - 359 comments

The facebook algorithm is teaching you what to want

What is the greatest danger of algorithmic culture? Christian Sandvig describes it as "corrupt personalization."
posted by Tesseractive on Jun 26, 2014 - 37 comments

The Anti-Social Network

Whisper is an app that allows users to "anonymously share your thoughts and emotions with the world, and form lasting and meaningful relationships in a community built around trust and honesty." Secret is an app " to openly share what you're thinking and feeling with your friends. Speak freely, share anything." The Genius of Whisper, the Massively Popular App You Haven't Heard Of. With New Anonymous Social App Secret, the Merit Is in the Message. Two Apps, One Hot Trend [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jun 15, 2014 - 72 comments

Peak Advertising and the Future of the Web

"Advertising is not well. Though companies supported by advertising still dominate the landscape and capture the popular imagination, cracks are beginning to show in the very financial foundations of the web. Despite the best efforts of an industry, advertising is becoming less and less effective online. The once reliable fuel that powered a generation of innovations on the web is slowly, but perceptibly beginning to falter. Consider the long-term trend: when the first banner advertisement emerged online in 1994, it reported a (now) staggering clickthrough rate of 78%. By 2011, the average Facebook advertisement clickthrough rate sat dramatically lower at 0.05%. Even if only a rough proxy, something underlies such a dramatic change in the ability for an advertisement to pique the interest of users online. What underlies this decline, and what does it mean for the Internet at large? This short [PDF] paper puts forth the argument for peak advertising—the argument that an overall slowing in online advertising will eventually force a significant (and potentially painful) shift in the structure of business online. Like the theory of Peak Oil that it references, the goal is not to look to the immediate upcoming quarter, but to think on the decade-long scale about the business models that sustain the Internet." [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Jun 3, 2014 - 173 comments

New experiences are under development at this very moment

The VR Chicken Matrix: "a virtual chicken world in which caged animals think they're wandering happily around in the open... got me thinking again about Facebook's recent purchase of Oculus VR."
posted by kliuless on May 24, 2014 - 23 comments

Real title: I Am Infallible; You Are Lucky To Receive My Wisdom

James Mickens (previously) gives a talk at Monitorama 2014 about distributed computing and security.
posted by A dead Quaker on May 13, 2014 - 10 comments

It's because you either found Jesus or had a baby.

The impact of "unfriending" on Facebook. [more inside]
posted by Kitteh on Apr 28, 2014 - 269 comments

Facebook gifts a police station

After moving two years ago to the poorer and more crime-ridden neighborhood of Belle Haven, Facebook has simply given the city $600,000 to open a police substation located one block from its headquarters.
posted by meowzilla on Apr 28, 2014 - 87 comments

We’d love to say “It’s not you, it’s us” but it’s totally you.

Eat24 explains why they're done with Facebook. They're not the first to notice problems with Facebook' business model. (previously). But it's not just businesses affected. people have been noticing a drop in their friends posts for a while. Facebook limits the users reach, and asks them to pay to ensure your friends see it.
posted by [insert clever name here] on Apr 11, 2014 - 136 comments

In Situ

BXL swings in the cracks is a "Collective who up-cycles waste (scrap wood, discarded domestic furniture, ...) into parasite interventions with the aim to vitalize public spaces." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Apr 4, 2014 - 1 comment

You've probably never heard of it

The Hipster Music Index [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Mar 27, 2014 - 72 comments

Watching Team Upworthy Work Is Enough to Make You a Cynic. Or Not.

Watching a curator crank out headlines is a bizarre experience, insofar as it’s almost indistinguishable from watching people toss out parodies of Upworthy headline styles—either way, the mind runs immediately to stock phrases like “you’ll never believe,” “you’d be wrong,” or “everything wrong with [topic] in one [piece of content].”
Nitsuh Abebe visits the Upworthy offices.
posted by frimble on Mar 26, 2014 - 85 comments

FaceocculousRift

Mark Zuckerberg buys Occulus Rift the darling of 3D VR gaming (previously: 1, 2) for about $2B. Given that the Oculus Rift was poised to be a major breakthrough for gaming, getting acquired by a advertising company social network has sent The Internet into a collective freakout.
posted by mathowie on Mar 25, 2014 - 338 comments

“I hate everyone I know.”

Facebook Fatigue [SLYT] [via: comediva]
posted by Fizz on Mar 24, 2014 - 60 comments

"Yeah, I Saw That Online."

9 Steps For Dating Like a Cowardly Drone
posted by The Whelk on Mar 10, 2014 - 94 comments

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